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Communications, partnership keys to satisfaction in MS patient care


New survey results show the importance of communications, partnership and individualized care for both multiple sclerosis patients and neurologists. The results of the international survey find MS patients closely split on satisfaction with their disease modifying treatment with 58 percent reporting being very satisfied or satisfied and of them, 67 percent said their expectations were met. However, 42 percent reported being somewhat satisfied or not satisfied and of them, 44 percent said their expectations were met.

For satisfied patients, 64 percent felt comfortable speaking with their neurologist. Most satisfied patients (69 percent) say they feel like equal partners or the primary / sole decision-maker in choosing their DMT. An overwhelming majority of neurologists (97 percent) agree on the importance of the input by patients into their treatment plan, and that involvement in the decision making process makes the experience more satisfying for patients (92 percent).

When choosing a DMT, in addition to wanting to know a treatment’s safety (51 percent) and possible side effects (51 percent), patients want to know about the long term treatment effects (46 percent), effect on daily life (46 percent), the ability to slow disease progression, and the treatment’s ability to reduce relapses (41 percent). Nearly all the neurologists (98 percent) noted that treatment plans should be customized to their MS patients.

The survey was conducted online by Harris Poll on behalf of Biogen among 982 adults diagnosed with multiple sclerosis and 900 neurologists who treat MS patients within Germany, Italy, Spain, the UK, and the U.S. online between March 18 and April 25, 2014.

The findings were presented at the 67th American Academy of Neurology's annual meeting in Washington, D.C.

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